Pension funds get cold feet on oil

Sunset for oil and gas stocks in Seattle. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Could it be that institutional investors, with their huge investment clout, have seen the light? In response to Bill McKibben’s “Do the math” tour of the USA, travelling to 21 cities lecturing about the connection between extreme weather, climate change and the fossil fuel industry, the Seattle City Employees’ Retirement System pension fund is considering divesting itself of oil and gas shareholdings.  The move was reportedly made after the Mayor of Seattle Mike McGinn requested the pension fund to reconsider their holdings of companies such as ExxonMobil and Chevron.

Although the FT reported reported last week (warning: paywall link) that only 1% of SCERS’ US$1.9 billion of assets was invested in oil and gas companies, it’s the thought that counts.  Most pension funds have huge holdings of oil and gas stocks.  If pension funds begin to shun fossil fuel investments because of ethical and environmental concerns, they may be looking to reallocate those investments into sectors which remedy the damage caused by fossil fuel and greenhouse gas production.

SCERS, give us a call – we have some great alternative ideas for where you could invest your money!

Categories: Economic Indicators

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